7 Smallest Countries in the World

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRAVEL TRIVIA)

 

7 Smallest Countries in the World

It may be hard to imagine that there are a number of countries in the world that are under 200 square miles in area, and that one is even smaller than New York City’s Central Park. Think you know where the smallest ones are? Here’s a look at the seven smallest countries in the world based on geographical size.

Marshall Islands

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The Marshall Islands is the first on our list and has the distinction of being the seventh smallest country in the world based on its 70 square miles of land. While it’s one of the smallest countries in the world, it’s also home to the Kwajalein Atoll, which is the largest atoll in the world. Located around halfway between Australia and Hawaii, the islands have around 68,000 residents and were previously part of the Trust Territory of Pacific Islands, which is administered by the U.S. The Marshall Islands is a popular destination for scuba divers who come to see hundreds of types of fish, coral and shipwrecks. Bikini Atollis a famous dive site that was once an American atomic test site that became a ship graveyard after WWII.

Liechtenstein

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At 62 square miles, Liechtenstein is the sixth smallest country in the world. Landlocked between Austria and Switzerland, this tiny country runs along the Rhine River. It became independent in 1806 and has around 36,000 residents. There is no airport within its borders, so you have to drive or fly into a neighboring airport like Zurich. Liechtenstein is still run by a prince who even has his own winery you can visit.

San Marino

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San Marino is a mountain country in north-central Italy. It sits on Monte Titano, which has an elevation of 2,477 feet. It’s said to be the oldest surviving sovereign state in the world and has the oldest constitution in the world. It was first written in 1600, and the nation was recognized as an independent nation in 1631. Tourism is a key part of the San Marino economy with over three million people visiting the country each year. Another interesting source of revenue for San Marino is coins and postage stamps, which are sought by collectors.

Tuvalu

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Tuvalu is located in the South Pacific, northeast of Australia, about a two-hour flight from Fiji. It is around 10 square miles and was formerly known as the Ellice Islands. It was once a British territory and became independent in 1978. Tourism is not a significant industry on the island, but it is possible. Tuvalu is actually made up of nine islands and atolls, three of which are true islands while the other six are coral atolls. If you plan to visit, be sure to bring lots of Australian dollars as there is no ATM and credit cards are not accepted anywhere on the islands.

Nauru

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Nauru is located in the South Pacific, near Australia, and comes in third with 8.5 square miles. Nauru was once called Pleasant Island and became independent from Australia in 1968. The island was renowned for its lucrative phosphate mining operations, which are nearly depleted today. That led to a 90% unemployment rate by 2011. What was once the richest island is now more well-known due to its unemployment rate and high rate of diabetes due to poor nutrition. If you’re wondering whether tourism is viable on Nauru, there are some intrepid world travelers who’ve made their way to the world’s third smallest country.

Monaco

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Monaco is the runner up for the smallest country in the world at 0.77 square miles. Monaco is home to the world-famous city of Monte Carlo, which is a favorite retreat for some of the world’s most rich and famous. Situated on the French Riviera, near southeastern France, this country of less than one square mile is also home to the Monte Carlo Casino and the Monte Carlo Formula One race.

Vatican City

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At 0.2 square miles, Vatican City is the big winner, or smallest winner, in this lineup. What it lacks in size, Vatican City makes up for in influential religious power. It is the center for the Roman Catholic church and where the Pope resides. Vatican City is a walled area of Rome and was declared an independent state in 1929. There are around 800 people who reside in Vatican City with more who “commute” in for work. If you were calculating the smallest autonomous regions in the world based on population, Vatican City would lose out to the Pitcairn Islands, which has around 40-60 residents.

What Is a Micronation?

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRIP TRIVIA)

 

What Is a Micronation?

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In short, a micronation is an entity that claims sovereignty while being part of another nation. A micronation is not formally recognized as an independent country, regardless of its claims. However, even though micronations (like the Swedish-adjacent Ladonia, whose flag is pictured above) aren’t recognized by other countries or international bodies like the United Nations, that hasn’t stopped some of these unofficial territories from acting as independent lands. Many micronations have adopted their own currencies, postage stamps, passports, and other common activities associated with real countries.

But Isn’t That a Microstate?

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In short, no. A microstate is a duly recognized sovereign nation that happens to be very small. Well-known microstates include Andorra, Lichtenstein, and Monaco. All four of these locales are small independent countries or states that enjoy autonomy and are considered to have their own governments — even if they depend on a larger nation for protection or support. A perfect example would be the Vatican. Officially, it is an independent state, but it receives support from its surrounding country, Italy.

How Did Micronations Begin?

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When compared to “real” countries and territories in the world, the concept of a micronation is fairly novel. And by that, we mean it’s still pretty new. The oldest record of a person declaring their own sovereignty on land already claimed by a country dates back to the early 20th century. Martin Coles Harman claimed the British Isle of Lundy as his own nation because he also owned the land. And then during World War II, the Principality of Outer Baldonia was formed in 1945 when Russell Arundel, the chairman of Pepsi Cola Company (now PepsiCo), declared sovereignty over a rocky island off the coast of Nova Scotia.

Over the years, micronations have been created by eccentric people like Ernest Hemingway’s brother, as well as government idealists, separatists, and people or groups focused on making political statements. Most notably, during the 1980s several Japanese villages in the northern part of the country declared their independence from Japan as a show of protest against Japan’s strong embrace of modernization. And in 2014, Greenpeace declared a segment of glaciers on the border between Chile and Argentinaa sovereign micronation known as the Glacier Republic. This was a publicity stunt to bring awareness to the lack of environmental protections to prevent glacial damage caused by nearby mining activity.

How Do You Create a Micronation?

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If you’re bent on creating a micronation, it’s easier than you might think. Keep in mind that most likely, your micronation will never be formally recognized as an autonomous state. But if you’ve always wanted to be a leader of your own land, keep reading these quick tips to create your own faux country.

You Need Land

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For starters, in order to have your own country, you need land or a defined territory with clear borders. There are a few options here.

  • Your own property: If you own land, this is probably the easiest way to declare a sovereign state.
  • Undeclared land: Remember how we mentioned that Greenpeace created a micronation on the glaciers between Chile and Argentina? This is because they took advantage of a few loopholes that left those glaciers categorized as undeclared land between the two nations. Look for contested lands between states or nations and look for opportunities to stake your claim.

You Need a Government

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Real countries have some form of organized government or structure. Regardless of how you want to lead your new country, if you want anyone to come close to taking you seriously, you should draft a constitution. People with experience forming micronations recommend following the Model Constitution Code to create a relatively simple democracy.

You Need Citizens

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Yes, you need citizens. So, now you need to decide who will be a part of your new country. Will it be a nation of one, or are you going to recruit other people to renounce their current citizenship and join forces with you?

You Need Diplomacy

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Now that you’ve established a country, you’re going to need to negotiate terms with other nations. And this is where things can get “creative.” By some standards, paying taxes can qualify as international relations. For example, American citizens who pay property and annual income tax could continue to do so even if they’ve established their private residence and land as a sovereign entity. If you take creative license, those taxes could be interpreted as a tribute paid to a foreign nation to enjoy their protections and services.

Good to Know

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A micronation can still be found in violation of a real country’s laws. If your micronation Weedtopia allows for cannabis use outdoors but you live in Indiana where using the substance at all is illegal … you’re still going to jail. You aren’t a sovereign land like a Native American reservation that is a duly recognized independent territory with their own laws.

Which countries have the largest royal families?

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRIVIA GENIUS)

 

Which countries have the largest royal families?

Before getting into the countries with the largest royal families, let’s take a moment to discuss what constitutes a royal family.

A royal family is simply defined as the relatives of the ruling king or queen. However, the family members included under the umbrella term “royal family” vary from country to country. In some instances, the royal family includes only the immediate relatives of the person in power. In other cases, the royal family includes a multitude of aunts, uncles, and cousins. Being a member of a royal family is a coveted position and title in most countries, regardless of how much power the actual monarch has. Often, family members fill critical roles in government, politics, and the military.

In total, there are 26 royal families, also known as monarchies, across the globe. Two important differences between all of these royal families are size and power. The monarch of the royal family rules with either absolute (direct) or constitutional (indirect) power. Those ruling with absolute power have the greatest political power and impact on the day-to-day lives of everyday citizens. Monarchs who operate under constitutional power have less political power and serve as more of a figurehead than an actual leader.

The country with the largest royal family is Saudi Arabia

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The royal family of Saudi Arabia, the Salmans, is estimated to be comprised of nearly 15,000 family members. This royal family’s size is due to the commonplace practice of polygamy. Due to the family’s large size, they have an enormous amount of power and wealth. As a result, there have been numerous intense battles over the years to either become king or protect the family name. For example, it is not uncommon for kings to be ousted from power due to moral or religious transgressions. In addition, female members of the family have been beheaded for adultery or violating religious customs. There have been multiple inside and outside assassination attempts as well.

The current king also holds the title of prime minister. He is estimated to have a net worth of upwards of $17 billion. In present-day Saudi Arabia, it is common for royal family members to hold governmental cabinet positions. While the current king was put into power based on family lineage, all future kings of the country will follow a different route to the throne. A 2006 decree altered the line of succession into a more formal process. The next king will be selected by a panel of princes rather than by birthright.

Which other families are at the top?

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Because the size of royal families in other countries dwarfs in comparison, there are no official statistics on their size.

Nonetheless, there are still plenty of interesting facts about the remaining 25 royal families that span 43 countries around the world. One oft forgotten fact is that, in the past, there were many more monarchies than there are today. While some were deposed or overthrown from power, there are a few who volunteered to bring an end to their own power. Both Russia and France did away with royalty and monarchies altogether in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

Perhaps the most shocking fact of all regarding royal families is that the Vatican is considered a monarchy. As a result, Pope Francis has the title of Head Monarch. He rules over the Vatican itself as well as Vatican City. Like the Saudi Arabian monarchy, future popes are chosen and put into power by a group of cardinals from the Vatican. Finally, one of the oldest royal families in the world is the Danish monarchy. This monarchy can be traced back over 1,000 years.

5 of the Most Stunning Churches from Around the World

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF TRIP TRIVIA)

 

5 of the Most Stunning Churches from Around the World

Even if you’re not a religious person, there’s something humbling and awe-inspiring about the masterful architecture of beautiful churches. You can’t help but appreciate the design and effort that went into building these structures. And, you just might be surprised to find that there are eye-catching cathedrals around the world, not just in Europe.

St. Peter’s Basilica – Vatican City

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Of course, we start with Europe because this is really where grandiose churches and cathedrals began. While most people might focus on France, probably one of the most iconic religious structures is also the home of the Roman Catholic Church. Next time you head to Rome, be sure to take a trip to the Vatican to visit St. Peter’s Basilica, which is technically located in Vatican City, a papal state within Italy.

The structure took roughly 120 years to build between 1520 and 1626. It is considered one of the best examples of Italian Renaissance design and was a collaborative effort from some of the era’s top creatives: Donato Bramante, Michelangelo, Carlo Maderno and Gian Lorenzo Bernini. Even though St. Peter’s Basilica is the oldest church in the world and carries significant symbolism for Catholics worldwide, it is not the mother church of the Catholic Church or even the primary cathedral for the Diocese of Rome.

Las Laras Sanctuary – Ipiales, Colombia

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South America contains one of the largest demographics of practicing Catholics in the world. For a nation steeped in magical realism, the story behind Las Laras Sanctuary makes perfect sense. In 1754, an indigenous woman and her daughter claimed that they experienced a religious vision when the Mother Mary appeared to them after lightning hit a stone while they sought refuge during a storm.

Their location, Las Laras, became a religious pilgrimage site as countless followers visited it to marvel at the image of the Virgin Mary in stone—which you can still see today. A shrine was initially built in the mid-18th century, and in 1802, the shrine was converted into an actual cathedral. Today, the current Las Laras Sanctuary is a reimagination from the older sitem, built in the early 20th century. However, it’s an architectural feat because it rises 330 feet above the canyon bottom and includes a bridge that spans 160 feet to the other end of the canyon.

Notre-Dame Basilica – Montreal, Canada

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It’s understandable that a country with close ties to Europe would follow in its architectural traditions. Montreal is located in Quebec, one of the two provinces in Canada that speak French. The Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal is the first Gothic Revival style cathedral in the country. The sanctuary is best known for its colorful interior and accents. Colorful touches aren’t just limited to stained glass windows. In fact, various portions of the cathedral are painted bold blues, purples, reds and greens.

Also interesting is the fact that the stained glass windows don’t depict common scenes from the Bible. Instead, the windows show the history of Montreal. The church was initially built in 1672 and began various refurbishing and renovation projects in 1785. In 1824, a congregation boom served as the catalyst for a completely new build, giving way to the current iteration of the Notre-Dame Basilica. Construction on Notre-Dame ended completely in 1891.

Church of St. George – Lalibela, Ethiopia

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Depending on how plugged in you are to religious trivia, you may or may not be surprised to find out that the largest population of Christians is actually in Africa. The Church of St. George, located in Lalibela, Ethiopia, is the oldest structure on this list and is the only one that is not a place of worship for Catholics. Built from volcanic tuff—the only material used in creating the church—construction occurred between the 12th and 13th centuries.

The Church of St. George is one of the most recognizable symbols for members of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, a division of the Episcopal faith. The church was commissioned by King Gebre Mesqel Lalibela, who wanted to recreate Jerusalem. Because it is a rock-hewn church, it is also a UNESCO World Heritage site.

St. Andrew’s Cathedral – Singapore

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Last but not least, Asia also makes this list. There are a number of beautiful cathedrals and churches across the continent, many of which are popular destination wedding sites. But Singapore often tops the list when you look at Asia because of the variety of classically built structures. And, if you have even a passing knowledge of Singapore’s colonial history, this shouldn’t be surprising.

St. Andrew’s Cathedral traces its roots to Sir Stamford Raffles, the founder of Singapore, who personally selected the land where the church stands today. The first version of the church was completed in 1837, but multiple lightning strikes caused the cathedral to be condemned in 1852. Undeterred, parishioners set to work planning the church’s replacement and opted to design it in the Early English Gothic style. Construction on the second version was completed in 1862.

Which churches do you think are the most stunning? Have you had the chance to visit any of these beautiful places yet? If not, be sure to add them to your next vacation itinerary.

6 Countries With Only One Border

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6 Countries With Only One Border

Every country has boundaries. For island nations and the unique country-continent of Australia, that’s water. But other countries literally rub elbows with other nations. For most, there are many shared borders. But a select few have only one border.

Canada

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Canada is one of three countries in North America and the only one that can claim a single border, and that’s with the United States. To the north is the Arctic Ocean, and its coasts are bounded by the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. However, its entire southern border is shared with the U.S. along with a solid claim to four of the five Great Lakes. Eight of Canada’s 13 provinces touch one or more of 13 U.S. border states. The two nations share the distinguished title of having the longest international border. You might also be surprised to find that the Canada-U.S. border is the busiest border crossing in North America.

South Korea

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South Korea sits on the Korean peninsula and shares its northern border with its former compatriot, North Korea. Once a unified and sovereign nation, the two countries have technically been at war since American and Soviet troops officially ended armed conflict in the region in 1953. South Korea’s northern border sits right on the 38th parallel, an artificial border created at the close of the conflict to create two separate nations.

While the 38th parallel sits within the Demilitarized Zone (the DMZ) they are not the same thing. The DMZ refers to a 150-mile stretch of land that runs along the 38th parallel with 1.2 miles of neutral, unfortified grounds on the north and south sides of the parallel. If you’re feeling brave, you can take guided tours to the DMZ, and legally take a few steps into hermit kingdom North Korea.

Lesotho

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Some countries only have one border because they’re entirely surrounded by another country. While this is rare, there is one more nation that also has this feature. This is known as an enclave countryLesotho is completely enclosed by South Africa and boasts a population of 2 million people. The nation first came to be in the early 1800s under its original name, Basutoland, under King Moshoeshoe I. Over the years, Basutoland fell under British and Dutch control before being returned to its native people in 1966 and renamed the Kingdom of Lesotho.

Vatican City

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As we mentioned, only two countries in the world have the distinction of being an enclave country, and Vatican City is the other one. Its official title is Vatican City State, and it is the home of the Catholic Church. The history of the Catholic Church’s papal states and autonomous rule within Italy and greater Europe is a long and complex one. But to keep it simple, even though the Vatican has existed for centuries, it didn’t become a separate entity from Italy until 1929. The lands are under the control of the Holy See with the pope serving as its ruler. However, even though the Vatican City State is sovereign from Italy, you’ll be happy to know that you don’t need a special visa or even your passport to visit this famed religious state. As long as you can legally enter Italy, you can walk right into the Vatican.

Haiti/Dominican Republic

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So we know that there are a few nations in the world with only one border, but sometimes these countries occupy the same general lands. A perfect example of this is the island of Hispaniola, which is home to Haiti and the Dominican Republic. If you remember your history lessons, Christopher Columbus mistook the island for India on his initial voyage in 1492. We’ll fast forward through the history lesson and say that the island was divided between the French and Spanish. The French created Saint-Domingue (now Haiti), and the Spanish created La Republica Dominicana or the Dominican Republic. During the island’s colonial days, relations between the two island states were strained, and to a degree, they still remain difficult today. However, both countries are popular tourist destinations for Americans and Europeans.

United Kingdom/Ireland

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Another popular “one island, two nations” situation is in Europe, although this one is a bit of a technicality. When you think of the United Kingdom, your first thoughts are of London, Manchester, or other famed cities in England. But the United Kingdom is comprised of four countries: England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. So, since Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom, the entire nation can claim a single border with the Republic of Ireland. Once again, this border is created by a complicated history.

Northern Ireland was created in 1921 after popular opinion—and the Government of Ireland Act of 1920—pushed for the northern portion of the island to remain with the United Kingdom. Northern Ireland was home to unionists and descendants of Britain. So, it’s understandable that they wanted to remain with their motherland. Today, both nations are also popular destinations with thriving tourism industries.

7 Incredible Castles in the U.S.

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7 Incredible Castles in the U.S.

7

Incredible Castles in the U.S.

Think you have to travel to Europe to see a jaw-dropping castle? Think again. Although they aren’t nearly as common here as they are in England, there are actually several castles in the United States. Some are hidden, and some are just standing there in plain sight. Here is a list of the seven most incredible castles in the U.S.

Belvedere Castle, New York

Belvedere Castle, New York

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Did you know there’s a castle in Central Park? Not many people outside New York do. Belvedere Castle was created by Calvert Vaux in 1869 as a way to welcome visitors to the park he helped design. It looks out onto the park’s Great Lawn and gives visitors the opportunity to take in some fantastic views from the top. In fact, the view is so great that it gave the castle its name — “Belvedere” means “Beautiful View” in Italian. This castle is not just beautiful to look at, though, it is also functional. The National Weather Service takes advantage of its location to take measurements of things like wind speed, rainfall amount and temperature for its forecasts.

Montezuma Castle, Arizona

Montezuma Castle, Arizona

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Montezuma Castle in Camp Verde, Arizona, is unlike any castle you have ever seen. It is built into the side of a cliff, where it has been sitting for more than 800 years. This pueblo “palace” contains 45 to 50 rooms, but unfortunately you will never be able to get inside to count them. Since 1951, this castle has been off-limits to the public as looters and time have rendered it too fragile for it to be safe. You can still climb up to peer in the windows, though, as you imagine what life must have been like back when it was built.

Castello di Amorosa, California

Castello di Amorosa, California

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If you have always wanted to visit Italy but can’t afford to leave the States, then head to Castello di Amorosa in California. Visiting this castle is like visiting Tuscany hundreds of years ago — and many visitors don’t realize that it was just completed in 2007 after a 14-year-long building period. Built by Dario Sattui, the great grandson of an Italian immigrant, this 107-room castle is a love letter to Italian culture, as well as a thriving vineyard and winery.

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Scotty’s Castle, California

Scotty's Castle, California

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Located in one of the only green areas of California’s Death Valley, Scotty’s Castle has an interesting history — and one that is full of lies. Rumor has it that this castle was built by a man named Walter Scott, also known as “Death Valley Scotty.” He told everyone that he had built it with a fortune he had gained from a collection of secret mines nearby that only he knew about. In reality, though, the castle was built by Albert and Bessie Johnson, who used it as a vacation home. Walter Scott was a friend of the family, though, and the castle bore his name, even if records show no evidence that he ever actually visited it at all.

Bannerman Castle, New York

Bannerman Castle, New York

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Of all the castles in the United States, Bannerman Castle arguably looks the most like an authentic castle from Europe, if only for the fact that it is now in ruins. The castle was built in 1901 by Francis Bannerman VI on Pollepel Island, an island that was once considered to be haunted. This was the perfect place for the owner of a military surplus company to build a fortress in which to store all the weapons he stockpiled during the Civil and Spanish Wars. Unfortunately, there proved to be some sort of curse on the island after all; in 1967, the castle was destroyed by a fire, turning it into a collection of beautiful ruins.

Iolani Palace, Hawaii

Iolani Palace, Hawaii

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While most of the castles in the United States were built by millionaires, Iolani Palace in Honolulu, Hawaii, is the only one that is an official royal residence. It was built in the early 1880s by Hawaii’s King Kalakaua, one of the last monarchs to ever reign over the region. The very last was his sister, Queen Liliuokalani, who ruled Hawaii after him and lived in the palace he had built. After the monarchy was overthrown in 1893, the castle was kept up and restored, so now it still looks much like it did back then.

Boldt Castle, New York

Boldt Castle, New York

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The history of the number one castle on our list is a sad one. The idea for Boldt Castle was conceived of by millionaire George C. Boldt, who was also the proprietor of the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. He wanted to build a “full size Rhineland castle” on Heart Island in Alexandria Bay as an expression of his love for his wife. He was planning to gift the castle to her … but then something terrible happened. In 1904, Boldt’s beloved wife died. Bereft, Boldt immediately stopped construction on the castle and never returned to the island. The castle sat there, unfinished, for more than 70 years, until the Thousand Islands Bridge Authority bought the property in 1977 and began restoring it for future generations.

5 Smallest Cities in the World

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5 Smallest Cities in the World

Big cities usually get all the attention. They are known for their impressive number of residents and famous buildings and other structures that bring travelers from all over the world. But what about the cities on the opposite end of the spectrum? The smallest cities in the world are pretty impressive too, and they definitely deserve some love. While there is some debate over which cities are the tiniest since there are so many different criteria to consider (and because the list is changing all the time), here are five of the smallest cities currently on record.

City of London, England

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No, not that London. Within the city limits of the big, bustling London we all know, there is actually a much smaller city called “City of London.” Also known as “The Square Mile” due to that fact that it is just barely more than one square mile in size, this borough has legislative powers that are much more impressive than the rest of the boroughs in the larger London area, as well as its own police force. City of London is significant in that it “corresponds closely to that of the ancient city from which modern London has grown,” making it even more of a “real” London than the real London.

St. Davids, Wales

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In terms of population, the smallest city in the U.K. is St. Davids. It is not much larger than a village, and is built around a cathedral and monastery founded by St. David in the 500s. It achieved city status in 1995, and now has a population of around 1,800 people, only around half as many as St. Asaph, the second smallest city in the country. Visitors can enjoy a peaceful, quiet, tiny city surrounded by greenery, as well as several cafes, hotels, art galleries, and restaurants.

Vatican City, Italy

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Vatican City is technically not just a city, but a city-state, meaning that it is an independent country within the confines of Rome. It is only 0.17 square miles in area, which makes it the smallest country in the world, as well as the smallest city, according to some sources. It has a population of around 800 people, but only around half of these people actually live in the city. The others live abroad, typically doing work in the diplomatic sector. For the most part, the population is made up of nuns, cardinals, priests and other religious figures, as this city is the home base of the Pope and the Catholic Church as a whole.

Adamstown, Pitcairn Islands

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While Vatican City might hold the title for smallest city size, Adamstown is one of the smallest in terms of population. In fact, it is the world’s least-populated capital city. It is a part of the Pitcairn Islands in the south Pacific, and is home to all of these islands’ residents – all 48 of them. Most of the people living here are said to be descendants of the crew of a British ship called the HMS Bounty which landed here in 1790 and began to populate the small island with a new generation of residents.

Hum, Croatia

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Coming in at number one on our list is the town with the smallest population of all: Hum. Hum is located in Istria, Croatia and has a population of “barely” 20 people. Local legends say it was built from stones that were left over when giants were building other towns. Today it is famous, not just for its tiny size, but also for a spiced brandy called biska, which is made from an ancient recipe involving mistletoe.

Understanding Revelation Chapters 16,17 & 18 (Armageddon, Babylon And The Harlot)

Understanding Revelation Chapters 16,17 & 18 (Armageddon, Babylon And The Harlot)

Like all things that are writings about Scriptural Truths there will be people who are offended and upset about what is written. I am sure that this article today will be one of those events, but I am not here to please humans, I am here to help them to see and to understand. In this article today it will seem to many that I am picking on the Catholic Church, that is not my intention, truth is my intention. Many people do not read the Book of Revelation because they say that they just don’t understand it because the parables are beyond their understanding, unfortunately most of the Christian Religions also fall into this abyss. Unfortunately many Churches do not teach Revelation because what is written does not jive with their Church Doctrine. I am going to start this article at Revelation chapter 16, verse 14. When the end times of this system of things that we all live in today there are seven Vials in Heaven that will be poured upon the Earth by Angels of God. Where I am beginning is after the Sixth Vial has been poured. This is a time when all the Nations of the Earth gather their Armies together to fight against God/Jesus and His Angels at the Second Advent of Christ. This is when the world will see that they have been deceived by the three ‘would be’ Gods who are actually three Devils. The sad part is that these people will be the ones who have the Mark of the Beast/Devil (your government given number) in their foreheads or implanted in their forearm/wrist and it will be too late for them.

 

16:14 “For they are the Spirits of Devils working miracles who go forth to the Kings of the Earth and to the whole world to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.” 16:16 “And He (the Devil) gathered them together to a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.” 16:17 “And the seventh Angel poured out his vial into the air: and there came a great voice out of the Temple of Heaven, from the Throne, saying, It is done.” 18 “And there was thunder and voices and lightning; and there was a great earthquake such as has not been since men have been upon the Earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great.” 19″And the great city (Jerusalem) was divided into three parts (Jewish, Islamic, Christian), and the cities of the Nations fell: and great Babylon (Rome/Vatican) came into remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of His wrath.” 20 “And every island fled away (disappeared) and the mountains were not found (flattened).” 21 “And there fell upon men a great hail out of Heaven, every stone about the weight of a talent (7.5 lbs): and men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail; for the plague thereof was exceeding great.”

 

For the purpose of not making this article into a book itself I am going to hit the ‘high points’ of chapters 17 and 18. These high points are designed to help you understand these two chapters if you decide to read them for yourself which I sincerely hope you will.

 

In 17; it speaks of the ‘Great Whore’ that sits upon many waters: with whom the Kings of the Earth have committed fornication and the inhabitants of the Earth have been made drunk with the wine of Her fornication. (This Great Whore is the Catholic Church/the Vatican). You see when Christ returns He is coming for ‘His Bride, The Church’. The Catholic Church throughout its history has called itself ‘The Church’ and at one time it was but it started committing adultery with the kingdoms of the Earth, it did not keep itself clean/pure. The reach of the ‘spoiled Bride’ reaches to all the continents and all its Kingdoms. ‘The Church’ is not pure, it has committed mass adultery with the Kingdoms of the world of which Satan rules thus they have been in league with evil for at least 1600-1700 years, thus the Catholic Church is ‘the Great Whore’ spoken of here in Revelation. Starting in verse 3 the Apostle John speaks of the Woman (the Catholic Church/ the Vatican) sitting upon a scarlet colored Beast (Devil). “And upon her forehead was a name written, “MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.” “And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the Saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus:”

 

Chapter 18 starting with verse 2 the Apostle John speaks of another Angel that came down from Heaven who spoke with a mighty voice saying “Babylon the great is fallen and has become the habitation of Devils and the dwelling place of every foul Spirit,” 3: “For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of Her fornication, and the Kings of the Earth have committed fornication with Her and the merchants of the Earth are become rich through the power of Her delicacies.” 8: “Therefore shall Her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning and famine; and She shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judges Her.”

 

I will end this article today with this last little bit from the last few verses of chapter 18 starting with verse 20. “Rejoice over Her, thou Heaven, and ye Holy Apostles and Prophets (preachers); for God has avenged you on Her.” “And a mighty Angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, This with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down, and shall be found no more at all.” 23: “…; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.” Then lastly verse 24: “And in Her was found the blood of Prophets, and of Saints, and of all that were slain upon the Earth.”

I hope that this article helped to clarify a few things for you. I am not trying to be hateful or mean toward anyone, I am only trying to be totally truthful with you. My hope is that through this article some of you will take the time to read these passages and hopefully understand them a little more. I pray that God will bless each and every one of you, good night.

Revelation: The Great Whore Of Babylon: THE Anti-Christ: Here Are Some Answers

Revelation: The Great Whore Of Babylon: THE Anti-Christ: Here Are Some Answers

I grew up in a small town in northern Illinois and attended the local Church of Christ. This was from age ten to age eighteen when I moved away. The local church tended to have total attendance of about 100-140 with probably about 60 of those being the adults.  This was also back before people had home or work computers to use for finding out information. This Church of Christ always stated that they are a ‘New Testament’ church so they basically ignored almost all of the Old Testament yet they also ignored the last book of the New Testament, the book of Revelation. I was told several times by the local church leaders (Elders and Deacons) that they just didn’t understand it so they left it alone also stating that man kind just wasn’t meant to understand the mysteries of that Book. At 18 I quit attending the Church of Christ and started digging even deeper into the Bible and Christian religions and even more so into non-Christian religions. I am a person that wanted to know what the meanings of things were so I have spent the last fifty years praying and studying religions so I could know what the Holy Spirit inspired writers of the Bible meant by the things they wrote. I am also a big fan of historical information from around our world. This information I am about to give to you is from these results. I hope you will study and consider these answers I give you. To the best of my personal knowledge these things I write to you are simply Bible Truth.

 

If you have a Bible handy or for the purpose of later study, the Scriptures I am going to be discussing with you can be found in the Book of Revelation in chapters 17 and 18. In the first chapter of Revelation we are given the knowledge that John (the writer) was on the island of Patmos in the eastern Mediterranean Sea as a prisoner of the Roman Empire. John ‘the Elder’ was on this island jail because of his teachings of Christianity and of Jesus Christ. Jesus in a Spiritual form visited John and told him to write this book  and gave him the information He wanted given to the seven churches of Asia minor (modern-day Turkey). Today’s article is not about those seven churches though I hope you will read these chapters after you finish reading what I am telling you in this post. Today’s article is about the 17th and 18th chapters and what the Spirit of God has to say to all of us. Obviously folks who are Catholic do not tend to agree with what I am about to write or they would not be Catholic. The problem within the Catholic and Protestant churches flocks is that most folks who do attend a Church tend to almost never open their Bibles to see if what their preachers are saying is in fact what the Scriptures say.

 

From Revelation chapter #17: (The Great Harlot Is Described) The ‘great harlot’ is the Catholic Church of about the past 1,700 years. In verse one it speaks of ‘one of the seven Angels’ that had the seven vials. There are seven ‘Spirits’ that surround the Throne of God in Heaven, almost every scholar I have ever spoken with believes as I do that these are the seven ‘Arch Angels’ of God.

 

And there came one of the seven  which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying to me, come here, I will show you the judgement of the great whore that sits upon many waters: With whom the Kings of the Earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the Earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication. So he carried me away in the Spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet colored beast, full of names of blasphemy having seven heads and ten horns. (These are future nations/kingdoms)

And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet color, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abomination and filthiness of her fornication.

And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.  2 Thess. 2:7

And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the Saints, and with the blood of the Martyr’s of Jesus and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.

 

The great harlot is destroyed: Starting with verse seven: And the Angel said to me, why do you marvel? I will tell you the hidden truth of the woman, and the beast that carries her, which has the seven heads and ten horns.

The beast that you saw was and is not; the beast shall ascend out of the bottomless pit (Hell) and go into perdition: and they that dwell upon the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in The Book Of Life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.

And here is the mind that has wisdom. The seven heads are seven mountains (Continents) on which the woman sits.

And there are seven Kings: five are fallen (past tense at this time) and one is (at that time) and the other is not yet come for he shall remain a short time.

And the beast that was, and is not, even he is the eight, and is of the seven, and he will go into perdition.

And the ten horns which you saw are ten Kings which have received no Kingdom as yet; but will receive authority as Kings after one hour with the beast.

These (Kings) have one mind, and shall give their power and strength to the beast.

And these shall make war with the Lamb (Jesus), and the Lamb shall overcome them: For He (Jesus) is Lord of Lords, and King of Kings: and they that are with Him are called, and chosen, and faithful.

And he (the Angel) said to me, the waters which you saw, where the whore was sitting, are people, and multitudes, and nations and tongues.

And the ten horns that you saw upon the beast, these shall hate the whore, they shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh, and burn her with fire

For God has put in their hearts to fulfill His (God’s) will, and to agree to give their Kingdoms to the beast, until the words of God shall be fulfilled.

And the woman who you saw is that great city, (Vatican City) which reigns over the Kings of the earth.

 

Chapter #18   (Babylon the great is destroyed)

 

And after these things I saw another Angel come down from Heaven, having great power, and the Earth was lighted with his glory.

And he cried mightily with a loud voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, and has become the dwelling place of Devils and the hold of every foul Spirit and a cage for every unclean and hateful bird.

For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the Kings of the Earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the Earth have waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.

And I heard another voice from Heaven, saying, Come out of her my people that you be not partakers of her sins, and that you receive not of her plagues.

For her sins have reached unto Heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities.

Reward her even as she rewarded you, and double unto her double according to her works: in the cup which she has filled, fill to her double.

How much she has glorified herself, and lived deliciously: so much torment and sorrow give her; for she says in her heart, I sit a Queen, and am no widow, and shall see no sorrow.

Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine, and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judges her.

 

Starting at chapter 18 verse 9:   (Earth bewail’s Babylon’s destruction)

 

And the Kings of the Earth who have committed fornication and lived deliciously with her, shall bewail over her, and lament for her when they shall see the smoke of her burning.

Standing far away for the fear of her torment, saying, Alas, alas that great city Babylon, that mighty city! For in one hour your judgement came.

And the merchants of the Earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buys her merchandise any more:

The merchandise of gold and silver and precious stones, and of pearls, and fine linen and purple and silk and scarlet and all scented wood, and all manner vessels of ivory, and all manner vessels of most precious wood and of brass and iron and marble. (verses 13-16 are mostly just a continuation of items liken to those just mentioned).

Verse #17

For in one hour so great riches have come to nothing, and every ship-master and all the company of ships and sailors and as many as trade by sea, stood afar off.

And cried when they saw the smoke of her burning, saying, what city is like unto this great city!

And they cast dust on their heads and cried, weeping and wailing, saying, Alas, alas that great city, wherein we were made rich all that had ships in the sea by reason of her costliness! For in one hour she is made a ruin.

 

The last five verses of chapter 18: (Heaven Rejoices Babylon’s Destruction)

 

Rejoice over her, thou heaven, and you Holy Apostles and Prophets for God has avenged you on her.

And a mighty Angel took up a stone like a great millstone, and cast it into the sea, saying, Thus with violence shall that great city Babylon be thrown down and shall be found no more at all. (A moderate size asteroid tossed into the Mediterranean Sea just west of Rome/Vatican City would certainly do this).

And the voice of Harper’s and musicians and pipers and trumpeters  shall be heard no more at all in her.

And the light of a candle shall shine no more at all in thee; and the voice of the bridegroom and of the bride shall be heard no more at all in thee: for thy merchants were the great men of the Earth: for by her sorceries were all nations deceived.

Verse 24 (last verse): And in her was found the blood of Prophets, and of Saints, and of all that were slain upon the Earth.

 

Well, that is it folks for tonight, I hope you enjoyed the article. I pray for peace for every human on this planet but to receive true peace we must all be very careful about whom/what we worship and how we ourselves decide to live our lives today and everyday. Good night folks, God’s blessings I wish to you all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Former Pope Benedict XVI says he’s preparing for ‘Home’

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF CNN)

 

Former Pope Benedict XVI says he’s preparing for ‘Home’

(CNN)Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI says he “is on a pilgrimage toward Home” in a rare public letter published in the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera.

The brief note in Italian apparently came after the paper asked the Pope Emeritus for a response to readers who were wondering how he was.
“I can only say,” Benedict wrote, “that in the slow waning of my physical forces, inwardly I am on a pilgrimage toward Home.”
“It is a great grace for me to be surrounded on this last part of the road, sometimes a bit tiring, by such love and goodness that I never could have imagined,” he wrote.
The 90-year-old former Pontiff has been living quietly at the Vatican since his surprise resignation as Pope in 2013.

sot vault pope benedict xvi first speech_00013817.jpg

Here’s the full text of Benedict’s letter:
“I was moved by the many readers of your newspaper who desire to know how I am spending this last period of my life. I can only say that in the slow waning of my physical forces, inwardly I am on a pilgrimage towards Home. It is a great grace for me to be surrounded, on this last part of the road, sometimes a bit tiring, by such love and goodness that I never could have imagined. In this sense, I consider the question of your readers as an accompaniment. I can only thank them and assure you all of my prayers.”